I probably shouldn't speak, since I have an Imago, Swift, and Large Cafe Bag, and a Co-Pilot arriving sometime soon (weather has fouled up UPS - it was supposed to arrive today). Since the price on the Co-Pilot is going up, though, I think I would recommend purchasing that bag first, and then adding a Cafe Bag when you next can. They are both fabulous bags, but I do find I only carry the Cafe Bag when I need to sacrifice organization for lighter weight. All of my current bags are Ballistic with the exception of my Cafe Bag, and sometimes that weight difference means a lot.
Navy is actually my favorite Ballistic color. I have it in my Imago and my Little Swift. It is a gorgeous fabric and seems to pick up different tones depending upon lighting, etc. I also find that the navy is very neutral for my wardrobe and can be worn with most of my clothes. My interiors are either Wasabi or Steel for the navy, and I like them both.
I use the CoPilot as my EDC. It is great. The right size and great organization options. I don't carry a laptop, but I do carry my iPad mini, Moleskine, glasses, headphones, pens, a Jambox Mini, a set of colored pensions, and a few other misc items.
It is fantastic.
And, yes, as Tlacltme said, the Navy Ballistic Nylon has a sheen like the Aubergine that isn't caught well in the pictures. I sympathize with your comments about Nordic Dyneema availability in the Co-Pilot. That's another fabric combination that is much more impressive in person than in photos, and it also has a sheen from the way the fibers are woven -- different for the 400d Black Dyneema of your Side Effect, but equally impressive.
Also, just my personal thought, but I suspect that the new Pilot is going to boost my usage of this style of bag, just as the re-design of the Side Effect drastically increased my use of the Side Effect. I always thought that I'd use this bag (Co-Pilot) a lot more if it were just a little larger so folders went in a bit more easily. But I love the way that Side Effects and 3D organizer cubes integrate with the Co-Pilot and now with the Pilot, too.
I just packed my Canon DSLR, iPad mini, extra lens, side effect and pouches into my girlfriend's new Aubergine/Wasabi Co-Pilot! There is no stopping this little beast from packing a ton of stuff. More so than the MCB I'm guessing do to the organizational genius of the Co-Pilot.
With that being said, I have this weird nagging feeling that the Co-Pilot is a bit small for a man's EDC bag. I know it's a dumb thing in my head. I'm definitely not a macho guy, I love bags and shoes too much, haha! Any other guys have a problem with the size of the Co-Pilot being too small? I know the Pilot is a bit bigger but it's $40 extra that will go to a Side Effect for my girlfriend :) And our trip is in 3 weeks. The Navy/Iberian Co-Pilot is calling to me and the price goes up on Monday!
Check out this thread: http://www.tombihn.com/forums/photos...html#post47479 on what my CP carries. I wouldn't want anything bigger for an EDC.
I really shouldn't have ordered a co-pilot right now, but when it comes to TB (and with price hike looming), I can talk myself out of common sense every time. So I'm getting one in steel/ultraviolet. Yay! I'm starting a re-training program tomorrow to embark on a much needed career change. I can change up my synapse 19 and my co-pilot - both will nicely accommodate what I need for work and classes. Actually, my swifts will make nice school bags, too. (For you non-knitters out there, the swift is a great every day bag.) To get me through, I'll envision the day when I can carry my co-pilot to my dream job. :)
I have all the TB personal-size bags: Medium Cafe Bag, Ristretto, etc., but have settled on the Co-Pilot. And ... the Navy/Iberian (I love Iberian) is my EDC. I also have the All-Iberian co-pilot... a truly beautiful bag to behold. This is my electronics gear bag (I am a traveling Apple consultant). I have written about this before if you want to read my past posts. I also have my original CP – black/steel – which was my constant companion during a 10-day hospital stay a couple of years ago. I don't use it now – I really wanted the Iberian interior.
MY TYPICAL CO-PILOT EDC KIT (Navy/Iberian with TB Absolute Shoulder Strap):
> iPad Air in the Apple Smart Case (red of course) [Sometimes inside a TB Cache]
> A TB Guardian DF Light on strap to illuminate the interior of main pocket
> A personalized plastic tag that has my name, phone and email address on one side and "REWARD IF FOUND" on the other. This is strapped to one of the o-rings. [The reward is the $50 bill that I carry elsewhere.. see below. I have NEVER left an EDC behind or misplaced it after all these years, so am not too concerned. But... just in case!] The tag is the "You Name It Personalized Luggage Tag" from Personalized Gifts from Personalization Mall
Inside one of the two internal pockets of the main compartment:
> Anker 2nd Gen Astro3 12000mAh Portable Charger/Backup External Battery
> Mophie Juice Pack Plus (in red of course) for my iPhone 5s in case of need
Inside the other internal pocket of the main compartment:
> A 3D Fabric Organizer Cube (In Iberian, of course) which contains my cables, chargers and adapters, as well as my Samsung Mobile HotSpot.
> A Super Spork (one-piece fork, knife, spoon) from CountyComm (CountyComm - Super Spork)
> An emergency coffee kit inside a small metal tin (Industrial Strength Survival Food Grade Tin from CountyComm
> A FieldNotes notebook and pen (Field Notes Brand)
> Business cards
> Eye drops
> Collapsible magnifying glass
> Emergency $50 bill inside a WATERPROOF DELRIN® PICO PULL from CountyComm
> FieldNotes pen, a Sharpie, a white-board marker and a stylus
> A Fenix LD15 High Performance LED flashlight on a TB strap
> An extra strap poised to hold keys
> A Laser pointer
> Glasses case
> The tiny Cordura Organizer Pouch I just received as the TB Christmas gift -- holding a few quarters plus my Square card reader for ad-hoc payments to me
> Apple EarPods inside an Iberian small Organizer Pouch on a TB strap
> A small generic aluminum waterproof storage cylinder (in red of course) that acts as a pill container. Strapped along with the small organizer
> A Toddy cleaning cloth for iPad/iPhone (Mobile Device Screen Cleaner | Microfiber Cleaning Cloth | Toddy Gear)
> An HDE 15x-55x Zoom 21mm Compact Monocular in case
> Occasionally, I can stuff a 20 oz Coke Zero in here
I have DIYd zipper pull cords with red/black paracord for all zippers, except solid purple for the right-side pocket (to help me visually identify the pocket with the glasses!)
By the way -- I've written about this before -- you won't notice lip balm in any of my bags!
AND YES.... I placed an order for a Tom Bihn Pilot (Black/Iberian) the moment it showed up on the site! What can I say, I came down with Bihn Acquisition Syndrome a long time ago. If it turns out it's not for me, I will simply return it. Most likely I will keep it, thinking that some day I might like it. But, I think I will like it... so I think I will keep it..... Somebody, please help me!
Someone please help me!
I have BAS (Bihn Acquisition Syndrome)!!